The Supreme Court of India has reserved its order in the students’ plea against University Grants Commission’s (UGC) decision to make final-year exams compulsory. This plea is against UGC’s July 7 decision asking institutes to conduct final year exams by September 30.
SC has asked all the parties to give a note on their submissions within the next three days.
The apex court bench headed by Justice Ashok Bhushan is hearing the matter. During the hearing, Justice Bhushan questioned whether the final semester examinations can be skipped by students.
Solicitor General Tushar Mehta appearing for UGC said that many universities have conducted their examinations already. He added that while the universities can ask for an extension of the September 30 deadline, these entities do not have the right to confer degrees without conducting examinations.
Senior advocate KV Vishwanathan appearing for the Delhi government said that there is a divide between rich and poor students and that the latter may not have access to technology to write online exams.
Responding to this, Justice MR Shah said that UGC is not conducting exams and that it upto the universities.
Also, Justice Bhushan added that only the authorities will be able to decide students’ welfare and that students are not ‘competent’ enough to decide.
However, Justice Bhushan responded saying that not all universities in India follow the semester system. Students had sought cancellation of the examinations citing health concerns due to the Coronavirus outbreak.